Aditya Birla Renewables Ltd, part of the diversified business conglomerate Aditya Birla Group, has signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) with Odisha's power trader Gridco. The pact is for developing 75 Mw solar power plant in the state.
The company had offered the lowest bid of Rs 2.79 per unit for putting up the 75 Mw project in the state in response to the 200 Mw solar power tenders floated by Gridco.
"Gridco has signed the PPA with Aditya Birla Renewables on December 20, 2018 for development of 75 Mw for 25 years. From the date of signing of PPA, they have around nine months to comply with the land details. The company is in talks with Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (Idco) for finalisation of land", said a source.
The 75 Mw solar power plant needs 375 acres land. Since availability of contiguous land is tough, the project is proposed to set up across locations.
Odisha in its first ever solar auctions in July last year, had floated tender for 200 Mw. The tenders were oversubscribed four times with Aditya Birla Renewables emerging the L1 bidder. But, the differential between L1 and the other bidders had unsettled Gridco authorities. Three players- were tied up at the L2 level with a price quote of Rs 3.19 per unit- Sukhbir Agro Energy Ltd, city based Gupta Power Infrastructure Ltd and Eden Renewable Varenne Pvt Ltd, bagging 25 Mw, 20 Mw and 50 Mw capacities respectively. Acme Solar finished as the L3 bidder, quoting Rs 3.20 for 50 Mw unit.
Despite appeal from Gridco authorities, L2 and L3 bidders did not scale down their price quotes to the L1 level. The bulk trader had to cancel the tenders for 125 Mw.
Gridco is constrained to commit long-term PPAs where tariff exceeds Rs three per unit. The bulk power buyer cum trader has been tapping more competitive sources of sourcing solar power. The power trader, in August 2018, had signed a power sales agreement with the Solar Electrification Corporation of India (SECI).
The pact is to buy 300 Mw from SECI’s upcoming auctions at an agreed price of Rs 2.72 per cent. The power is tipped to be fed to the state grid from 2019-20 end. According to the terms of the agreement with SECI, Gridco can draw this solar power without forking out transmission or wheeling charges.